Maths is a core subject and provides a way of making sense of the world. We need it to analyse, organise, communicate and manipulate information and ideas. It demands a specific vocabulary and as well as providing an understanding of number, also develops concepts associated with pattern, shape and problem solving and reasoning. We place a strong emphasis on developing positive attitudes around the subject right from Early Years, promoting strong characteristics of effective learning such as perseverance and resilience.
Our vision for children as mathematicians supports the three core aims of the National Curriculum:
Children will become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics. They will develop a flexible understanding of the number system. This encompasses both conceptual understanding as well as accurate recall of facts including multiplications.
Children will be able to reason mathematically. They will develop the vocabulary necessary to articulate, justify and prove their thoughts, follow a line of enquiry, make generalisations, develop an argument and explain their understanding.
Children will be able to solve problems by applying their mathematical knowledge with increasing sophistication. They will develop different strategies for approaching problems. They will also develop their resilience and perseverance skills as they seek solutions .
At Newbrough, children learn through a mastery curriculum in mixed age classes. Teachers reinforce an expectation that all pupils can achieve in maths and the majority will progress through the curriculum at the same pace. In mixed age classes, the children will see and learn the same content over a 2 year period in order to build a greater depth of learning by the second year. We use White Rose small steps as a basis for our planning and then adapt and supplement this with other resources where necessary.
Strong foundations in number sense are developed through 'Mastering Early Number' (NCETM) in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2. This also develops children's recall of early number bonds and facts. In KS2 number facts and multiplication tables are taught explicitly within key skills sessions in order to ensure conceptual understanding and then daily short fluency sessions provide opportunities to recall facts and multiplication tables. Opportunities to practice and apply this knowledge are also woven into lessons. Children are expected to practise their recall of facts and tables at home. We use Times Table Rockstars to support this.
Reasoning and Problem Solving
Lessons have reasoning and problem solving woven throughout and teachers place a priority on questioning that encourages children to justify and explain their thinking. There is a strong emphasis on developing and using the correct language to articulate their ideas which starts in reception and continues throughout school. Children's developing perseverance and resilience to stick at tasks and work collaboratively are valued throughout school.
Learning new concepts
Concepts are built up slowly through small steps to ensure a secure knowledge and understanding. Lessons are planned so that children learn using concrete apparatus and pictorial representations before moving to an abstract approach to ensure they develop conceptual understanding.